Whilst some retail trends are disruptive, some may be innovative, and others simply refine and expand upon ‘traditional’ retail formats that have never really left us, they all rely on the physical presence in the market place, a customer centric approach, and a strong willingness to adapt and evolve to the ever changing customer behaviour of today.
Whilst some retail trends are disruptive, some may be innovative, and others simply refine and expand upon ‘traditional’ retail formats that have never really left us, they all rely on the physical presence in the market place, a customer centric approach, and a strong willingness to adapt and evolve to the ever changing customer behaviour of today. We are inundated by the media creating new buzz words every week in the retail sector, but as an SME, where do you begin implementing such trends? Over the next few weeks, we will take a closer look at 4 key trends most likely to affect SME’s and how we can translate those ‘trends’ into actionable implementation strategies to maximise profitability and growth within your business and improve what we like to call your ‘business fitness™’. This week we start with mobile.
Fuelled by the twin powers of convenience and instant availability of opinion, the use of mobile within consumer shopping behaviour is growing rapidly. As technology such as geo-fencing and mobile enabled sites spreads across the retail sector, we are seeing mobility moving into other areas within the customer experience including payments, push technology, loyalty, and order fulfilment; the omnipotent device for customer experience to retailer fulfilment emerges.
When mobile starting interrupting retail, there were many fears that mobile would take away from store profitability due to consumers being able to price check and buy immediately from competitors. However recent research from Deloittes shows consumers are 30% less likely to use smartphones to perform price comparisons in store than they were a year ago, whilst the influence of smartphones on instore sales rose to 28% in 2014, up from 19% the previous year. Consumers are advancing in their sophistication and using mobile more for inspiration and idea generation earlier their shopping process, and not simply as a price comparison vehicle. On top of this, Deloittes also found that people use digital while they shop in-store convert at a 20% higher rate compared to those who do not use digital in their shopping process. So how can an SME implement and gain from this trend? Simply by offering complimentary wifi in stores, retailers can encourage mobile engagement. Combine this with a strong social media strategy an SME has the potential to not only utilise this consumer behaviour trend to increase up-selling in stores, but also sustainably enhance brand loyalty and engagement.
Overall, mobility enables opinion and convenience and it is the inflection point of the two that is so powerful within a retail context.